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Readers are Smart—Respect What They Bring to Books

April 12, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Readers don’t have to write books to know a lot about them—and writers would do well to respect the reader’s knowledge and expectations.

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Writing Advice—What About -ing Words (Part Four)

April 8, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

There’s a lot of conflicting advice that tells writers to never use words that end in -ing or to not use -ing words under certain conditions. Explore both the advice and the rationale behind it.

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Writing Advice—Behind the Advice (Part Three)

April 6, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Explore the rationale behind writing advice before you choose to accept or reject it. Includes advice on semicolons, exclamation points, prologues, and opening stories with dreams.

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Writing Advice—Weighing the Advice (Part Two)

March 27, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

How’s a writer to know what writing advice is good and what is better ignored? A continuation of an earlier post.

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It Ain’t Over Till the Full Story Sings

March 23, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Many writers stop working on a manuscript before it’s truly finished. Polish stories to add resonance and to make them sing.

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Writing Novels vs. Telling Tales

March 13, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Tales and novels have different structures and purposes. Explore the differences and learn why telling tales in the middle of a novel is often not a good idea.

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Using Names in Fiction—4 Tips

March 7, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Suggestions for ways to use character names in fiction, especially at the beginning of stories when readers are just meeting the characters.

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Don’t Explain, Don’t Explain, Don’t Explain

March 3, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Excessive and unnecessary explanations can weaken the dramatic and emotional impact of sentences. Learn why explanations are often unnecessary and annoying.

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Lyrics and Poetry in Fiction—Copyright, Drawbacks, and Other Problems

February 21, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Information on copyright law, fair use doctrine, and creative ways to use song lyrics and poetry in your fiction.

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Get Pushy—Push Character Conflict and Reader Emotion

February 7, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Lack of conflict between characters and lack of emotion-inducing scenes for readers will make stories flat, boring, and tedious. Discover why conflict and emotion are so important to fiction.

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